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Is it time for you to look for your first Waterloo Region home in the New Year? Then you are not alone. Taking the first time plunge into home ownership is a resolution a lot of people make when the clock strikes midnight. And what an exciting adventure you have ahead as a first time home buyer!
For most people buying a home for the first time means that they are undertaking the largest financial commitment they will ever make, so it is certainly not a process to be rushed or entered into lightly, however exciting it is . There are some things that soon to be new homeowners can do to make the whole thing a little easier though.
Here are some of the most important:
Know What You Can Afford
When you are a first time home-buyer it is important that you know just what you can afford before you even begin looking for that perfect property.It’s easy to get carried away and fall in love with a property you then find you just can’t afford and the disappointment can be crushing when that happens.
That is why those who are going through the home buying process for the first time definitely need to get pre-approved for mortgage financing before they begin home shopping. That way you know just where you stand and you won’t ‘go shopping’ out of your price range.
There is another big advantage to pre approval as well. Being able to show home-sellers that even as first time buyers you do indeed have access to the funds needed to buy their property will make them far more willing to negotiate with you and take you seriously.
Get to Know the Area First
If you will be moving to a completely new area it is a good idea to research and get to know it first before you actually begin looking at individual homes.
Almost any neighborhood has parts that are better than others and so finding out just what an area is all about can save you from making a big mistake like buying a home that is too far away from a good school for your kids or that looks very nice but is actually located in a rather ‘unsuitable for you’ neighborhood.
Begin a Home Search Online
Once you have determined the area you want to look for a home in the easiest way to start the home buying process in terms of finding the right property is to begin your search online.
These days real estate companies list a great deal of information about the homes for sale on their books online and many not only include lots of great pictures in those listings but a full video home tour as well.
Although an online listing is certainly not like seeing the place in person these things can help you weed out properties that you really do not care for and might have been a waste of your time to go and visit.
Schedule a Day with a Realtor
Rather than seeing one property one day and then another a few days later if you have decided to work with a Realtor to find a home ask them to schedule a full day of showings for you.
Seeing a number of different homes in one day might be a bit physically exhausting but it helps as you can make immediate comparisons between the different homes you are considering while they are all still ‘fresh in your mind.’ No doubt it will take more than one ‘shopping day’ to find the home you are looking for but scheduling such days will help prevent the property hunt from overtaking your life!
Do Not be Afraid to Make an Offer
There is going to come a point in the home buying process when you finally think that you have made a decision and have found the home that is just right for you.
Once you have then do not be afraid to go ahead and make a serious offer. Delaying an offer because you think that the price may go down or that there still may be another property you haven’t seen yet that is in some way ‘better’ may mean that you lose the chance to buy the home at all! That is because the chances are very good that if you love the home that someone else does too and they may get their offer in before you do!